Farm bill would take hemp off fed's controlled substance list

MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) A national policy shift could help further grow the hemp industry in Vermont.

Hemp would be been taken off the controlled substance list as part of the proposed Farm Bill now before Congress.

Vermont Agriculture Secretary Anson Tebbetts says the state already has a hemp program. People who want to grow it only need to register. That program will continue, but farmers will have more access to banking systems and financing since hemp will be federally legal.

Tebbetts says the state will look to grow a Vermont-branded hemp industry.

"We believe hemp is going to be significant. We've already seen progress on that. There's lots going on in the hemp world right now. There's an endless supply of consumers, we believe, that are going to take part in this. And we believe in the end it will be much bigger than the marijuana industry if marijuana becomes commercial" Tebbetts said.

Vermont has about 3,000 acres of hemp crops right now.